Woodward lands new Olympic role

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Sir Clive Woodward has been handed the task of boosting Britain's medal prospects at future Olympic Games. Woodward, who coached England to their Rugby World Cup triumph in 2003 before trying his hand with less success at Southampton Football Club, has been appointed the British Olympic Association's new director of élite performance.

He has been charged with working with people from all British Olympic sports to help them to achieve their aims, and to be responsible for Team GB's training camp before the Beijing Games in 2008.

The 50-year-old Woodward will also act as deputy chef de mission (performance) at the Beijing, Vancouver 2010 (winter) and London 2012 Olympics.

Woodward takes up his new role on 18 September, less than three weeks after stepping down as the Southampton technical support director.

He said: "I will use my past experiences in high-performance sport to assist the 35 Olympic sports achieve their own aspirations, and working in partnership with UK Sport, national governing bodies and performance directors to ensure the performance of Team GB is maximised in the years ahead."

The BOA chief executive Simon Clegg admitted that he had had talks with Woodward about his possible involvement even before the success of the London 2012 bid last year.